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Joaquin Theodore received a Purple Heart for heroism.

Vincent Battaglia returned to San Diego and worked many years as a navigator on the boat of his older brother, “Trapper Dan” Battaglia. In an interview years later, Vince said he had the greatest respect for Joaquin. “Even today, I still call him Mr. Theodore.” ■
— Jeff Smith


  • 1. Gordon L. Rottman: “After Guadalcanal was secured, American ships entering the Slot executed a zigzag turn over Iron Bottom Sound as a show of respect for the ships and crews resting on the bottom.”
  • 2. Daniel Shapiro: “As a unit, the YPs had the highest loss of ships of any Navy unit during the war: 40 percent never came home.”
  • 3. San Diego Union, August 8, 1963: “A not inconsiderable number of the fishermen in Navy blue died in action.”


  • Felando, August J., “The Errand Boys of the Pacific: Tuna Clippers & World War II,” Mains’l Haul, Winter/Spring 2008, vol. 44: numbers 1 and 2.
  • Manchester, William, Goodbye, Darkness: A Memoir of the Pacific War, Boston, 2002.
  • Rottman, Gordon L., World War II Pacific Island Guide: A Geomilitary Study, Westport, 2002.
  • Shapiro, Daniel M., “The Pork Chop Express: San Diego’s Tuna Fleet, 1942–1945,” M.A. thesis, University of San Diego, 1993.
  • Theodore, Joaquin S., “An Interview with Joaquin (Jack) Theodore,” San Diego Historical Society, Oral History Program, February 29, 1992.
  • Zolezzi, Julius, interview.
  • Articles in various newspapers.

Floating Target, part 1

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